Toronto Aria | ?m | 19s | Fernbrook Homes | Rafael + Bigauskas

Was at Ikea on the weekend and it is making a big impression on the skyline. Not a fan of the look but glad to see the subway corridor getting denser.
I suppose this building does look busy. I'm sure a lot of people would compare it to The Cheddington... and I don't understand why people generally pan this development. I drive by it daily; it looks pretty nice. No?
There is no one right answer to your question 4grand: Aria and the Cheddington share a design aesthetic that is pleasing for some and not for others: it depends on what you want from architecture.

I need details interchange... DETAILS!

Why are those buildings considered kitsch? I mean, I can see how some of the elements would hint towards that, and I'd like to think that I have good taste, but I can't for the life of me identify what's so horribly wrong with The Cheddington.

Please, someone, feel free to tell me, I'm genuinely interested!
I'm with you 4grand, I don't get it either. Different strokes for different folks I guess.

For anyone interested in the state of the project, phase two has now received some cladding. Phase one's first floor is nearly fully enclosed with windows and they've started the second floor. They have also started to frame the walls inside at least the first three floors. The lobby also looks to be nearing completion from a concrete pouring point of view.
Buildings like the Cheddington are poor facsimiles of an era of architecture passed. They usually use inferior materials, and lack the detailing of the era they try to imitate, and end up looking contrived. In the case of Aria, I find that in addition to the mediocre details and materials, they lack any grace in their form and presence; the messy balconies and fussy roof elements are overbearing.
Thanks egotrippin.... Now, for some follow up questions, and I mean these seriously:

What's wrong with using passed architecture, or do you mean, as long as it's not done like a cheap clone?

Did The Cheddington use cheap materials? It all looks quite high grade from Bayview.

I can understand the difference between, say, American federal architecture and the gawdy federal architecture of Russia: One is classic, yet refined, the other is just way too much and clashes. Is this a good parallel to draw?
My issue is that even with the Cheddington, which isn't as cheap looking as some places, still just uses pre-cast patterned concrete. It also tries to imitate the excess of Victorian era buildings, without applying the same level of attention to detail that made many of those structures so grand. I also can't tell exactly what it's trying to imitate specifically though, as it looks like a mishmash of styles.

There's nothing wrong overall with drawing influences from past generations of architecture, but a good architect will create something unique to this era using cues from the past, rather than just taking details but not really doing anything exceptional or different with them. Besides, I'm not really a fan of historicist buildings anyway so it's hard for me to relate with them. I'd rather see us embrace modernity and new styles that are of our time, rather than trying to recreate an imitation past.

The federal architecture of Russia that you're referring to, while overbearing, at least represents the era in Russia well. These modern historicist buildings don't really do that as much. Though again, interchange put it well, you get what you want from architecture. I love classic architecture and buildings, especially the Victorian stuff, but when it comes to our new stuff I'll take a clean modern design any day.
Thanks egotrippin..

Let's just hope our modern architecture doesn't turn into the next brutalism, leaving us looking at a sea of green glass thinking: "what were we thinking?".
March 13 2010 update

Aria's presence is certainly becoming very evident now ~ :cool:

View from Sheppard - south elevation
Click to Enlarge

Aria 1 @ 14th floor - northwest & west elevations

Aria 2 @ 11th floor - northwest & southwest elevations

Some May Call This Fussy Faux Architectural Detailing - but I like how this turned out

related note: Aria Townhouses have now been released ~
Thanks as always for the update Solaris. The signage for the towns was put up this past week-end. Full details have not been released, but it does say that the starting price is $699,990 and includes two car garage. A dedicated site has been put up at but there are not further details, one can only sign up for further details once they are released to the general public.
.. and the floor plans are gone from the main web site. All sold I guess.

I was at the site on Sunday and one big section of the fence was missing from the west side .. as everything is covered already, it's very tempting to look around but of course that's trespassing so I'll just wait another 6-8 months :)
The crane for phase one was also extended to allow them to continue pouring the remaining floors. Not sure why they didn't just make the crane the necessary height to begin with. They've already poured about a third of the next floor, should be doing a floor every week at the minimum which means they should top out phase one in a month or so (crosses fingers).
I doubt they can do one floor a week given the large building footprint of Aria ~

one week per floor is more typical for a point tower
The floorplate from the 14th floor is about a third of what is was on floor 13, you don't think they can do that in five days? I guess time will tell, though thanks for the input.